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Hope Springs EternalFrench Bondholders and the Repudiation of Russian Sovereign Debt$
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Kim Oosterlinck

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780300190915

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300190915.001.0001

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Reputation, Trade Retaliation, and Recognition

Reputation, Trade Retaliation, and Recognition

The Hope That the Bolsheviks Would Change Their Position

(p.45) Two Reputation, Trade Retaliation, and Recognition
Hope Springs Eternal

Kim Oosterlinck

, Anthony Bulger
Yale University Press

This chapter first reviews the literature suggesting that reputational concerns may prompt sovereigns to honour their debts. It then shows that Russia benefited from a good reputation before the repudiation. The chapter then proceeds to analyse the motivations underlying the decision to repudiate the debts and the role played by the various bondholders’ associations. The analysis of the negotiations suggests that the Soviet regime used promises to repay as a diplomatic tool. The lack of coordination amongst creditors and the failure of the international conferences held at Genoa and The Hague opened the way to bilateral treaties. The Soviet Union managed gradually to get international recognition. As for trade sanctions they were in the Russian case ineffective as some creditors came to value trading with Russia as more important than reimbursement.

Keywords:   Reputation, Diplomacy, International Trade, Political Recognition, Genoa conference

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